Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex criminal offense. When you take a look at the a few of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out a few of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first documented case of art theft was in 1473, when two panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were stolen. While the triptych was being transported by ship from the Netherlands to Florence, the ship was assaulted by pirates who took it to the Gdansk cathedral in Poland. Nowadays, the piece is revealed at the National Museum in Gdansk where it was just recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

The A Lot Of Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most popular paintings worldwide and among the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louver. Not long after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, but was launched quickly.

It took about two years until the secret was resolved by the Parisian police. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who simply brought it hidden under his coat. However, Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal activity was carefully conducted by a infamous bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic creating copies for the popular masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops while trying to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.

The Greatest Theft in the USA:
The biggest art theft in United States took location at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars using police uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative worth was approximated at around 300 https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/kurt-criter million dollars. The burglars took 2 paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have actually been discovered and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealers are connected to the criminal offense.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most searched for painting by art burglars in history. It has been stolen twice and was only recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was stolen from an Oslo gallery by two thieves who broke through an open window, set off the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for the bad security.

3 months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government turned down the offer, however the Norwegian cops teamed up with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the thieves to request ransom cash, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian police found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the truths on how they were recovered are not understood.


When you look at the some of the most well-known cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly prepared operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most famous story of art theft includes one of the most famous paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal offense was thoroughly carried out by a notorious con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most sought after painting by art thieves in history.

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